The Shenandoah Conservatory New Works Incubator presented “A Killer Party” at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 4, and 2:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 5, in Glaize Studio Theatre.
“Shenandoah Conservatory’s musical theatre program was thrilled to partner with Music Theatre International (MTI), Kevin Duda Productions and the authors of the new musical ‘A Killer Party,’” said Coordinator of Recruitment, Musical Theatre, Charles B. Levitin Chair in Musical Theatre Director, Director of Musical Theatre and Associate Professor of Theatre Kevin Covert, B.F.A. “The New Works Incubator is dedicated to the development of new works and we are thrilled to be able to help foster this new stage version of ‘A Killer Party.’ How lucky for our students to work with New York City-based director Stephen Sposito while creating wonderful new characters that have never been explored before in a live stage setting. We look forward to seeing the piece flourish.”
“A Killer Party: A Murder Mystery Musical” premiered in Fall 2020 as a fully produced (from home!) 9-episode Broadway star-studded musical, featuring Jessica Keenan Wynn, Alex Newell, Jarrod Spector, Carolee Carmello and more. This hilarious and irreverent send-up of the classic murder mystery features an all-star creative team that includes Jason Howland (music), Nathan Tysen (lyrics), Kait Kerrigan and Rachel Axler (book). Kevin Duda serves as the executive producer for the project.
When Varthur McArthur, the artistic director of a failing theater in Duluth, invites his troupe of disgruntled actors and collaborators to the first read of an “immersive murder mystery dinner party,” no one knew that he would be the victim. Or did they? Enter an eager, determined and untested Detective Case. After sequestering the guests into separate rooms (because, you know, social-distancing), she gets down to finding out whodunnit, uncovering secret affairs, life-long grudges, backstage drama and a lot of musical theatre song and dance. Sifting through lies and red herrings and a truly baffling murder mystery script left by the deceased, Case vows to find the truth and secure her future as a great detective.
The New Works Incubator initiative offers students the opportunity to work with new material, guest artists and/or innovative ideas and techniques that prepare them for today’s rapidly changing industry.